Three injured as blast hits terrace house

An EXPLOSION that wrecked a house and a separate fire which left one man dead were under investigation by fire service experts last night.

A man and a teenage boy were taken to hospital suffering burns after the explosion at an end-of-terrace house in Aysgarth Place, Richmond Hill, Leeds on Saturday night. One remained in Pinderfields Hospital, Wakefield, yesterday.

A neighbour was also injured, said police.

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More than 20 firefighters tackled the fire before they were forced to withdraw as the building was in danger of collapsing following the explosion, which is thought to have been on the ground floor.

Investigators from the police, fire service and the Health and Safety Executive will return to the scene today.

Inspector David Whitehouse, of West Yorkshire Police, said: "The scene has been secured and Transco attended and initial enquiries would indicate that the explosion was possibly due to a gas bottle exploding, although fire investigators are back at the scene today trying to establish the cause."

In a separate incident, an 82- year-old man died following a fire at a house in Leeds despite frantic efforts to save him by a relative.

The younger man, thought to be in his 40s, suffered smoke inhalation in his rescue bid at a property in Hollin Park Terrace, Fearnville, at 12.30pm on Friday.

A West Yorkshire Fire Service spokesman said: "At this stage there is no evidence to suggest that it is suspicious. However, there is more work to be done at the scene of the incident."

Yesterday two people had to be taken to Pontefract General Hospital following a serious blaze at a house in Ferry Fryston, near Pontefract.

Emergency services were called at 1.28pm to the address in Windermere Road and found a man and woman needing assistance. The cause of the fire remained unknown last night.